Jeune Skin Care: Ask the Experts


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Jeune Skin Care Aestheticians

Q. Are chemical peels safe during pregnancy?


A. A glycolic peel is a service that can be offered through spas and dermatologist offices. It is an exfoliating process that uses acid to remove the top layer of skin. It is a very popular treatment to help alleviate signs of aging such as fine lines, wrinkles, skin discolorations and scarring.


However, there is debate regarding whether these treatments put a pregnant mother and child at risk. Learn more about the following types of skin treatments and their potential effects during pregnancy.


Alpha Hydroxy


This is the acid that may contain acid from fruits or sugar cane, dissolving the top layer. There are no conclusive answers surrounding the use of glycolic on pregnant women. Studies have not used alpha hydroxy acids such as glycolic acid on pregnant subjects. There is some concern that alpha hydroxy acids will cause discoloration to the skin due to pregnancy hormones or cause harm to the child.


Salicylic Acid


The salicylic acid found in some chemical peels contains many of the same properties in aspirin, which can cause harm to a fetus. Pregnant women should not get chemical peels that contain salicylic acid. Some peels have a mixture of glycolic and salicylic acid. Also, avoid any products or professional peels that may include this chemical.




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Many women can still receive beauty treatments while pregnant. Microdermabrasion is one such procedure. The skin is exfoliated using a machine with crystals or a diamond head to remove surface skin cells.


Enzyme Peel


Some chemical peels are actually designed specifically for women who are pregnant, such as the enzyme peel. It is an acid-free treatment suitable for both sensitive skin and pregnancy.


After physically removing skin cells with dermaplaning, a product containing UREA is applied to help stimulate the skin's enzymatic exfoliating process (both microdermabrasion and the enzyme peel are available at UW Health Transformations Jeune Skin Care - Request a Free Skin Care Consultation).


Most importantly, always check with your physician first before having any procedure while pregnant.